Just Right Handweave Purses
Developing a textile for a purpose such as a coin purse isn’t as easy as I first thought.The purse in the previous post was an ikat designed balanced weave in 20/2 cotton, and although it was great using an interfacing I just felt that it wasn’t quite right. I think a slightly heavier interfacing is needed to support the fabric and lining better. After all coins are heavy.The next purse I finished was a larger one using a purse frame that required stitching. Developing a purse shape pattern that said “opulence” with gathers, I used my “peg plan art” silk fabric (developed from the Woven Pixel). This is a yummy fabric but once again I felt like more support was needed.The fabric was originally designed for wraps so it is very soft and drapey.I think the support needed is in a heavier lining so I can retain the richness in the cut and fabric design.The stitched saltwater pearls finished the purse frame.I then went and attacked a more radical weave…and disobeyed all the rules (very unlike me – must be maturity arriving at last).
I made up my own purse pattern again for the frame which worked out really well and fitted perfectly. Using a warp faced fabric I attached the woven interfacing onto the back and cut the purse weft ways instead of on the straight grain. Although this approach would usually weaken the strength of the fabric it seemed to work well here.The interfacing and the purse lining ‘upheld’ the textile, as subsidiary textiles should do for us.
I was pleased with this prototype for several reasons.
1.The fabric itself is my kind of fabric with crisp bright lines, warp painting and high setts (over 100epi).
2.My purse pattern provided a very pleasing shape.
3. The fabric can actually be created on an inkle loom! This is my absolute favourite loom because of its versitility, portability and potential for creativity.
The fabric is created from two strips. (see Conquering the warp from Hell). I made special joins and reinforcement but I found this very exciting. Just as in West African strip weaving, once again the concept of limitation in tools or resources creates inspiring take off points for design.
A “peg plan art” design woven in satins
The woven interfacing
The pattern – Cut 2 plus linings
The completed purse
View of how the fabrics meet at the side